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How-Tuesday: Wood-Burned Cutting Board

by Clare McGibbon

Aug 20, 2013

Set the stage for entertaining with a beautiful, personalized cutting board.

I love preparing a home cooked meal, and with harvest season upon us, there is no better time to pull out the family cookbook and dream up a feast. Step up the presentation with a beautiful personalized cutting board that will last for years to come, or keep it in mind as a wonderful housewarming, wedding, or holiday gift. You just can't go wrong with a thoughtful item like this! This project is a fun and easy introduction to pyrography. There are a lot of pyrography tools on the market, and some even cost less than $20. For this tutorial, we will be using a solid point burner, which you can find right here on Etsy.
You will need: Cutting board Pencil and eraser Pyrography wood burning pen with a variety of tips Plate (not pictured) Ruler (optional) Step 1: Draw your design
Use a pencil to draw whatever you want to burn on your board. For my design, I drew a line one inch from the edge of my cutting board, all the way around. Tip: When it comes to personalization, the sky is the limit! Write your initials or last name; have your child draw something; create an interesting pattern along the border of the board. Experiment and have fun, and if you change your mind, simply erase and start again. Step 2: Preheat your pen
Screw a chisel tip into your pyrography wood burning tool. Plug it in and let it rest for 10-15 minutes on a plate. Use caution – the metal tip of the tool will get extremely hot! Treat it as you would an iron and don't leave it unattended or within a child's reach. Step 3: Burn your board
Slowly and steadily draw along the design you sketched in pencil, using even pressure to burn the wood. Do not pause on the wood at any time. If you'd like to take a break along the way, place your tool on the plate and pick it up again when you're ready to keep going.
If you're making a design like mine, burn along the pencil line first. Next, use the chisel tip and rest it nearly perpendicular to the line on the wood. Hold for several seconds and repeat at 1/32" intervals all the way around the cutting board. Repeat on the other side of the line.
Wash your board with dish soap and warm water before using.
Happy entertaining!
All photographs by Romain Laurent.

The History of Pyrography | Shop Pyrography on Etsy

Clare McGibbon

Clare McGibbon is a Brooklyn-based designer and maker. Visit her shop A Ways Away and keep up with her latest DIY videos and inspiration on Instagram and Pinterest.